Wild Boy

Wild Boy by Nancy Springer

Book: Wild Boy by Nancy Springer Read Free Book Online
Authors: Nancy Springer
    Published by the Penguin Group
    Penguin Young Readers Group,
    345 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, U.S.A.
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    (a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd)
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    Registered Offices: Penguin Books Ltd, 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
    First published in the United States of America by Philomel Books,
    a division of Penguin Young Readers Group, 2004
    Published by Puffin Books, a division of Penguin Young Readers Group, 2005

    Copyright © Nancy Springer, 2004
    All rights reserved
    Springer, Nancy.
    Wild boy, a tale of Rowan Hood / Nancy Springer.
    p. cm. Sequel to: Outlaw princess of Sherwood, a tale of Rowan Hood.
    Summary: Determined to avenge the death of his swineherd father at the hands
    of the Sheriff of Nottingham, Rook finally gets his chance when
    the Sheriff’s son is captured by Robin Hood.
    [1. Revenge—Fiction. 2. Fathers and sons—Fiction. 3. Friendship—Fiction.
    4. Robin Hood (Legendary character)—Fiction. 5. Middle Ages—Fiction.]
    I. Title.
    PZ7.S76846Wi 2004
    [Fic]—dc22 2003019146
    eBook ISBN: 978-1-101-56348-9

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For Jaime


    F lat on his belly on the riverbank, Rook slipped his hands silently into the eddying pool. Here at the curve of the river, fat brown trout would be hiding in the shadow of the overhang. Letting his hands dangle in the icy water, for a timeless time Rook waited, watching and listening. An outlaw in Sherwood Forest could never be heedless of danger. But Rook did not stiffen when he heard branches rattling, the thud of hooves on loam, the creak of saddle leather. He lay alert, yet at ease, waiting for the horseman to ride past. Rook knew that his bare, skinny body lay weather-browned and almost invisible in the bracken, his shaggy black hair at one with the shade of the shaggy willows. This was how he liked to be, like a wild animal of the forest, a hidden, solitary creature who didn’t have to care too much, or think, or remember.
    His hands swayed with the river currents, seemingly of their own accord drifting deeper beneath the overhang, waiting for a trout to brush their fingers. In the bracken near Rook’s side lay half a dozen silver speckled fish. Rook wanted to go back to Rowan with enough fat trout to feed her and the others. But it was not that he cared about Rowan, Rook told himself, even though she was Rowan Hood, archer and healer, daughter of a woods witch and Robin Hood himself. Rook kept his distance from her and Beau and Lionel. He did his share, that was all. Rowan brought in small game and healing herbs; Lionel hunted deer. Even Beau, that laughing pest, gathered hazelnuts and such. And Rook caught fish to eat.
    Deep in the

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